Actor Sonu Sood has been appointed as the Punjab state icon to make people aware about ethical voting, the Election Commission announced on Monday.
Punjab Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) S Karuna Raju said his office had sent a proposal to the Election Commission of India in this regard, which was approved.
Here are more details on this.
The announcement was made on Twitter by the Chief Electoral Officer, Punjab.
It read, "The real hero of people is now the state icon of Punjab - Sonu Sood."
Sood, 47, has been hailed as a national hero for his philanthropic work during the coronavirus-induced lockdown.
He arranged transport facilities and food for countless migrant workers, a section badly hit by the health crisis.
Sood, who belongs to Punjab's Moga district, said he is overwhelmed by his appointment as the state icon. "I am overwhelmed and extremely grateful for this honor."
"Having been born in Punjab, this appointment means so much to me, emotionally. I am happy to have made my state proud of me and I am motivated to keep working hard," the actor added.
Sood has helped many needy workers amid the COVID-19 crisis.
He arranged buses and train as well as flight tickets to help migrant workers reach home during the lockdown.
He also made his hotel in Mumbai available for healthcare workers and provided PPE kits to doctors.
Not only that, the actor arranged free meals for thousands of people in Mumbai and neighboring areas.
In September this year, Sood was honored with the prestigious SDG Special Humanitarian Action Award by the Department of Planning of the Government of Punjab for his humanitarian work during the pandemic.
Sood had also recently announced that he is writing a book to recount his experience of helping migrants during the lockdown.
The book, titled I Am No Messiah, will be co-written by Meena Iyer. It is expected to be out in December this year.
"This is a story of my life, as much as it is of the thousands of migrant workers," Sood said.
"People have...lovingly named me messiah. But I really do believe that I am no messiah. I simply do what my heart tells me to. It is our responsibility as human beings to be compassionate and help each other," Sood said in a statement.
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